"02.24.22" Student Group Visits Russian War Crimes Exhibition at the Ukrainian Institute of America

Oct. 17, 2022

Founded in response to the war in Ukraine, “02.24.2022” student group organized a trip for Princeton students to visit the Russian War Crimes exhibition at the Ukrainian Institute of America on October 1, 2022. Twenty students attended the trip, along with Professor Mark Beissinger from the Politics department at Princeton. 

The exhibition began with an expansive map of Ukraine, assembled in cooperation with the General Prosecutor of Ukraine, indicating all independently verified war crimes and victims registered to date. The exhibition continued with a series of documentary photographs taken from all regions of Ukraine since the start of Russia’s full-scale invasion on February 24, 2022. The images depicted Russia's atrocities accompanied by individual accounts describing these crimes.

At the center of the exhibition, a video installation combined 4,683 verified photographs as evidence of war crimes, created in cooperation with contemporary Ukrainian artist, Oleksii Say. While the images pulse on the screen, audio clips of Russian soldiers, boasting of their atrocities on intercepted telephone calls, were heard in the background. The exhibition demonstrated the indiscriminate violence that has been central to Russia’s assault on Ukraine.

After a guided tour of the exhibition, Professor Mark Beissinger gave a talk on the problems of predicting a revolution in Russia and shed light on the history of Russia-Ukraine relations. The students asked numerous questions, learning more about the war and the position of the United States in this conflict.  

After viewing the exhibition, the group had lunch at a local restaurant. The students exchanged their thoughts on the exhibition and how they would incorporate what they had learnt into their future studies/work.